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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  June 2, 2015 8:00am-10:01am EDT

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to access markets and ideas will be particularly important for asean countries. infrastructure is something that still needs to get done. i think they're still underinvestment of infrastructure in that region. i know there was some controversy a while back because china wanted to start and asia infrastructure bank. we haven't yet signed on to participate. ..
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i worry about the great forests of indonesia and malaysia. if does i'll just become palm oil plantations and deforestation continues at the same pace that has then the prospects of additional accelerated climate change are very powerful, not to mention loss of species, biodiversity. the oceans if you get overfishing, that's a problem. given how overpopulated these areas are, it is very important economic development the sustainable development. otherwise i think we will all have problems. okay. that's good. young lady right here. >> hi, mr. president. i'm sheena nivea councilmember -- [inaudible] there are a few other good
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officials. i would really like to know what is a word of advice for young political leaders young legislative leaders and officials like me and a developing democracy. thank you. >> my first advice is don't be shy and you are okay. i think you'll do great. i think when i think about my own political career when i look at other political careers that i admire, the most important thing is to have a sense of principles and why you're in a public service. i think sometimes people want to be in public service because they like seeing their name up in lights. they like being important. that is a bad reason to go into
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politics. you should be like an actress or singer or make a lot of money. but if you are going into politics and public service there's only one good reason to do it and that is because you want to help people. you should know what it is you stand for and what you believe in. it doesn't mean you won't have to compromise and mean that you might not change her mind about an issue is to go forward and learn more and have more experience. but you should have something inside of you that says these are the things that are important to me that i will not compromise. for me throughout my political career even before i was in politics and was just working as a community organizer i knew that i wanted to work to create more opportunity for all people
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orientation was always how does this help the poor or the marginalized or somebody who has less opportunity than me. how is this going to help them if they work hard to get ahead? one of the important principles for me has been treating everybody fairly. but if that is winning or people of different races or different religious faiths or different sexual orientation, that one of my core principles is i will never engage in politics in which i'm trying to decide people are make them less than me because they look different or have a different religion. that is a core principle. that is not something i would violate. so if you have a clear view of
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what you stand for as you move forward you will have setbacks. there'll be times times where you didn't succeed. there will be times where you are frustrated. you might even lose an election sometimes. but at least you will know every morning when you wake up and look at yourself in the mirror. i know who i am and why i'm doing what i'm doing. those are the people we end up having successful careers because people advance the integrity and leadership. at least they know you believe in something. too many politicians are climbing the ladder but they don't know why and when they get there, they are not very effective leaders or they become much more subject to the temptations of corruption because all they are worried about is i want to hang onto my
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power and i'm willing to give up anything to stay in power and do anything to stay in power and that is when you lose your way. you have to be willing to do something for your principles. you have to be willing to lose an election because he think there is something more important than winning an election. if you do that now you should try and win. i'm not saying you should try them loose. you have to stand for something. that is my most important ways. gentleman and the grace to. gray suit. i come from vietnam. [inaudible] mr. president, what do you expect the young people to deal
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with the current challenge of the peace stability, respect to international law by promoting the operation between the countries -- [inaudible] >> especially with, i'm sorry, the last part? with the united states. i think i've seen already significant progress with countries over the last six years that i've been attending the avian summit and you know it initially the meetings with often times would just be symbolic and a lot of pleasantries and a lot of comedians and cultural events. we didn't always have an agenda.
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one of the things you start to see is people working much more concretely what are we trying to accomplish? how do we develop more capacity for example in the region around disaster relief so if heaven forbid there is another typhoon of the sort we saw in the philippines or we see some of their natural tragedy that all the countries assets can be brought to bear and we've done the training ahead of time to know who can help them how they can help the i think trying to work on coming up with standards around maritime law is a big challenge. obviously, there is significant tension right now between many of the countries in china as well as the united states with
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china around the south china sea and how those issues are going to be resolved. asean has been very constructive and trying to put together a code of conduct that all countries should abide by so that speeds of around the maritime boundaries are resolved through law and an impartial process rather than based on who's the biggest and that i think is very important. asean can play an important role in those areas. environmental issues. i've already mentioned a very fast-growing region and it is important to make sure there's a lot of cooperation between countries because small fisheries, et cetera those
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don't always observe national boundaries. working together you can accomplish more. and then human rights issues and democracy issues reinforcing good habits among the countries is very important. it is fair to say the elections taking place would not have happened if it hadn't been for the good example of that inclination is that with this transition and other asean countries show in showing the path from military rule to his democracy and how through the lessons it has been that could be accomplished and that created more space to feel that this is possible. so part of the goal here is to make sure that each country is reinforcing the best habit and
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the laws and observing human rights and been critical when one country slips but in a construct a way that allows for a path to improvement. i think asean can do that uniquely. the united states will be a partner. we have obviously bilateral relationships with these countries, but we want to be a partner with the group as a whole to encourage the cooperative model going forward. young lady right there. >> at afternoon, mr. president. i am from indonesia. iraq is a data data analyst in the office. my question to you, now that your second term in the office is about to land how do you want the world to remember you? thank you. >> fondly i hope.
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[laughter] i still have 20 months in office, so i've got a lot of work still to do before i can start thinking about looking backwards. i am still very much focused on what is in front of me. but obviously there are things that i have been proud of. when i came into office amid the united states and the world was going through terrible economic crisis. the worst releases are made and 30s. it was hard but we ended up avoiding a terrible depression and within a year the economy was growing again. in the united states now we are back to the pre-crisis
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employment levels. our auto industry was saved, but also internationally we have averted a much worse crisis because in part the leadership the united states showed along with international institutions and central bank managing that was very important. that is an important legacy for me. what was done to provide the united states and more education is consistent with the principles and the reasons i got into politics. internationally, we have reinvigorated diplomacy and a whole variety of ways. people don't remember when i came into office, the united
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states and world opinion ranked below china and barely above russia. today once again the united states is the most respected country on earth and part of that i think is because of the workweek day to reengage the world and say we want to work with you as partners with mutual interests and mutual respect. it is on that basis we were able to add two wars while still focusing on the very real threat of terrorism and to try to work with our partners on the ground in places like iraq and afghanistan. it is the reason why we are moving in the direction of normalizing relations with cuba. the nuclear deal we are trying to negotiate with iran iraq's kurds to help encourage
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democracy. the people of command bar deserve the credit for this new opening. but my visit there didn't hurt and trying to reinforce the possibilities of freedom for 40 million people. the direct engagement the work that we have done to build strengthening international organizations including issues like public health and the fight against ebola is the most recent example of that. we have been able to put our international relationships on a very strong footing that allows them to work more cooperatively with other countries moving forward to meet the important challenges ahead. i've still got a lot of work to do.
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in 18 months i checked back with you and let you know. [laughter] okay all right. gentleman right here with the sash. >> hello, mr. president obama. i am from irma and i would like to say hello on behalf of my family. i -- my question is what do you see as a critical area -- [inaudible] thank you very much. >> verma denmark and lost a lot of time over the last 40 years because of the very tight controls on the economy and discouragement of entrepreneurship in new businesses. part of the ricin that was so struck when i traveled was it
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reminded me of when i first arrived in indonesia in 1967. whereas when i go to jakarta now forcing a par or bangkok it looks completely different. this looks like the past. there is a lot of catching up to do. the good news is countries at the early stages of development can grow very fast because they're so much pent-up energy and opportunity. the most important thing is going to be establishing rule of law and systems in says griffey started this mess you can feel confident that you don't have to pay 100 bribes if you don't to
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hire somebody son and that you can make a profit that if there's a foreign investor in a can invest and be treated fairly and that their rights in intellectual property architect did. those basic systems of law where those are established, those countries can do well because the natural talents of the people and the incredible resources and hard work of the people pay off. look at singapore. singapore is a tiny little place. it has really nothing no resources to speak of. but today when you travel to
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singapore, it is as prosperous as anyplace in the world. why is that? part of it is that it is said that a set of systems where businesses were started or investors came in, day news that they could find a very skilled workforce. they knew that the rules for international standard rules in terms of operations. so it will take some time for myanmar to move in that direction. but you don't have to let to the united states. you can look at some of your neighbors to see what is required for success and what the united states will do is to provide technical assistance and will also try to provide direct assistance particularly around building skills and education because one of the keys is to
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make sure you have a work force that can add value. in the age of the internet, companies can locate anywhere. the most important thing is to find someplace where there is security so there is no conflict, where there is rule of law and the people are highly skilled. if you have those three things, people will invest. >> good afternoon, mr. president. i am from thailand and now i work on the anti-human trafficking in thailand and other countries. today i would like to ask you which country would you prefer to live with and why?
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thank you so much. >> excellent question. they may speak more broadly. i'll answer your question. we were talking earlier about what is required for myanmar to succeed. one of the most important things is to put an end to discrimination against people. because of what they look like or what their faith is. the manga have been discriminated against significantly. that is part of the reason they are fleeing. i think i would want to stay where i was born. i would want to stay in the land
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where my parents had lived but i would want to make sure that my government must protect to and the people were treating me fairly. that is what i want and that is why it is so important as part of the democratic transition to take very seriously this issue of how they are treated. one of the things about discriminating against people are treating people differently is by definition, that means people will treat you different and you never know when you will find yourself in a situation in which you are a minority, in which you are vulnerable where you are not being treated fairly. right now obviously our focus is on making sure that those who are being subject to human trafficking and are in some
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cases right now still in a very perilous situation in the open sea, that they are relocated. i want to commend indonesia and malaysia for their willingness to take off thousands of these displaced persons. the united states as part of our refugee process will take some. we've had over $100 million over the last several years and burma to make sure that minority groups, architect did against. ultimately, this is going to be a great test for the democracy of the future. not just in burma and myanmar, but areas fall throughout the country. and i know this directly because
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when i was young and i was living in indonesia, there were times when they were anti-chinese riots. they were very violent and vicious and fact sometimes the chinese indonesians were treated very similarly to how jewish europeans were treated in europe and subject to stereotypes and resentments. the truth of the matter is one of the reasons singapore has been successful is that it has been able to bring together people who may look different but they all think of themselves as part of singapore. that has to be a strength not a weakness, but that requires leadership and government being true to those principles.
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to their credit, and the intonation government when i was growing up is very good about not discriminating on the basis of religion despite the fact he was 98% muslim. i think that the tolerance or that their faith historically named tanisha as part of what has contributed to progress there. you haven't seen the same sectarian animosity you have seen in parts of the middle east. one thing i know is countries that divide themselves on racial or religious lines, they do not succeed. they do not succeed. that is rule number one. rule number two is the nations that suppress their women do not succeed. not only is it bad because half
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the country is not successful it is because they're not getting an education and opportunity but it is women who teach children which means the children are less educated. so which country is different, but some will soon look at around the world that are pretty consistent than those are two pretty good rules. don't divide yourself on religious and ethnic lines and racial lines and don't discriminate against women. if you do those two things, you know, you are not guaranteed success, but at least you are not guaranteed failure. i've got time for one more, to more. i definitely don't have time for 30 more. [laughter] what time is it? two more. i've got time for two more. a gentleman's turn. right back there.
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>> good afternoon mr. president. i am working with the department of irrigation -- [inaudible] by question for you is what have you learned about leadership and life as being president in comparison to what you might not have learned if you were not present at -- president? >> you know as that what makes this job unique is that you are the ultimate decision-maker. so there are other people who work as hard as i do. my staff works very, very hard.
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they are just as smart or smarter than i am. they care just as much or more than i do. they have wonderful qualities. but the one thing as president but ultimately there is nobody you can pass it on to you. harry truman, one of our best presidents once said the buck stops here. and it's true. by the time the decision comes to my desk you know it's a very hard problem because it was easy someone else would've solved it. and so the thing that i uniquely have had to learn in the presidency that i hadn't learned as well in other jobs is the ability to look at all the information you have listening
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to all of you guys and the different viewpoints that may exist about an issue, to try to make a decision based not on what is easiest for what i think is the best long-term solution and then feel called to bowl in the knowledge that i may be wrong and that there will be significant consequences if i am wrong. to have occurred six months later buried here they care to admit this didn't work and then to try something here. be willing to take responsibility for making hard decisions not being paralyzed because he knows there are big consequences and then being able to adapt based on the evidence
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as to whether it worked or not is the most important lesson i've learned and that his son and that is just unique to being president. whatever your job is funny you should be willing to take responsibility for getting the best information to listening to everybody, but then make a decision and understand you have to continue to evaluate and i think that it's been very important. a important. the second lesson, which is sent to you learned more of this president at all of you have learned in some ways in your work is to surround yourself with the best people. your most important job is to create a team of people, some of whom have talent you don't have to make up for your weakness is and then to want to make them
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better and make them successful. if they are successful, the team is successful. you are not a good leader if you don't want somebody who is smarter than you because he named maybe they will shine more than you do. then you are not a very good leader because your team won't succeed. so i am always looking for who are people who are much smarter than me are much more organized than i am much better at analyst. my job then is to weave them together so they are all working together effectively. if you do that, you are a good leader and you should be constantly thinking how can i help this person do their jobs even better. if you do that and people recognize you care about them being successful, they will work harder at what to do even better
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and they will appreciate you because you are helping them instead of trying to keep them subordinate to you. last question. all the men should put down their hands because it is a woman's turn. this young lady in the yellow right here. >> thank you president. good afternoon, sir. currently i am working -- [inaudible] first i want to say thank you forgiving this opportunity to meet you today. my question for you is what is your opinion about china -- [inaudible]
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>> well, as i heard it mentioned, what has allowed all of asia to prosper over the last two three decades, including china is there has been relative peace and stability, freedom of navigation, freedom of commerce and all of that has been underwritten. all of that has been because there have been rules that everybody has filed a period freedom of navigation requires people observed basic onto -- a sitcom that -- basic combat. if there is a dispute there is international mechanisms to adjudicate the dispute.
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if you start losing that approach and suddenly conflicts arise and claims are made based on how big the country is or how powerful its navy is status based on law then i think asia will be less prosperous. the pacific region will be less prosperous. that is why we have said to china and other countries we don't have a claim to these areas. we are not parties in the dispute. but we do have a stake in making sure they are resolved peacefully diplomatically in accordance with internationally
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established standards. for that reason, we think land reclamation aggressive actions by any party in that area are dead and we will continue as an asia-pacific power to support all countries who are prepared to work with us to establish and enforce norms and rules that can continue growth and prosperity. the truth is china is going to be successful. it's big. it's powerful. as people are talented and they work hard and it may be that some of their claims are legitimate. but they shouldn't just try to establish that based on throwing elbows and pushing people out of
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the way. if in fact their claims are legitimate, people will recognize that. i will say this, though, that i am much more confident in the future of southeast asia and the asian pacific and the world because i've had the opportunity to spend time with you. i think all of you are going to give outstanding work and i want to make sure that you know not all the while that the industry should and the united states government support the work you do but i curse and only after i leave office will have a great interest in seeing not only to succeed but those coming behind you, young people like yourself and you should be interested in making sure to promote the network and try to provide similar opportunities to other young people as you become more
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important in whatever your field are in the future. congratulations. good luck. [applause] [inaudible conversations] ♪
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>> the senate today continues work on the u.s.a. freedom act. the bill restores expired and is a provision's been exchanges to have the agency requires phone data. a procedural vote is scheduled for 10:30 this morning the 60 votes needed to it yet. next, a look at the debate from yesterday on the pending bill. >> mr. president, i want to speak about the fisa bill. before i do, i want to express what is on every one of our
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heart of our grieving with the joe biden family. that family has had more of its share of tragedy but what it has produced is in that case is beau biden, an extraordinary servant by serving in his uniform as well. most of us in this chamber no the biden family and the dad and now mom, joe and jill are extraordinary human being that has contributed so much.
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it is not necessarily easy to be in public service as long as the vice president has been still raise a family that is so extraordinarily accomplished and contributing so much. and then to have the eldest son taken from him just as like a dagger into our hearts. so we grieve with the family. we grieve for them and for the nation. i just wanted to get that on the record. mr. president, we are here because the senate is not functioning. we were here last night because
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the senate is not functioning. it is functioning according to the rules which says you've got to go through this arcane procedure of cloture on the motion to proceed and get 60 votes before you can ever get to the bill and once you get to the bill, then you file another motion for cloture in the senate rules says there are 30 hours that has to run unless as has been typical of the senate business, dares understanding, bipartisanship but one senator can withhold unanimous consent and that has been done.
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normally attack may be standard procedure for the senate. but it's getting in the way of our national security because at midnight last night the law that allows our intelligence community to track the e-mails and phone calls of the terrorists has evaporated and it won't be reenacted until sometime later this week because of the lack of unanimous consent. but the senator from florida is not putting it at the feet of just the one senator that is withholding the unanimous consent. the senator from florida is saying they should have been planned on over a week ago.
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in this senator is saying we should have gone through the laborious procedures not assuming that we were going to have the votes last night not assuming there is going to be comedy and unanimous consent. this senator thinks we should have done this because of the urgency of national security. that is interesting that this senator from florida comments here. i have voted for the leahy bill which is identical to the house bill. but i did that because we didn't have the other choice. when i had another choice i voted for senator burr, chairman of the intelligence committee's
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version which was to continue existing law and i did so because i clearly thought that was in the interest of our national security. but since that is not the prevailing both that the senate we need to get on with it and pass the house bill and i would urge the chairman of the intelligence committee who is here on the floor, i would urge him to down the line and the six months transitional. bring the old law to the new law that that be extended with a greater transition time to 12 or 18 months and i would further urge the chairman of the intel committee that a major flaw in the bill passed by the house, which we will eventually pass
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this week that it be added to it a requirement for a certain amount of time that the telephone companies would have to keep the telephone business records so that if there is an urgency of national security going through the fisa court that those records would be available to the intel committee to trace the telephone calls of the terrorists. that would be my recommendation and i see the chairman not being a somewhat agreement. so mr. president, i hope that our hearts and minds will prevail and that we can collapse this period of dark where there is no law governing e-mails, phone calls cell phones et cetera as we try to protect
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ourselves from the terrorists. i hope that would be collapsed into a much shorter time instead of having to wait until late tuesday or wednesday or thursday of this week. mr. president i yield the floor. >> mr. president i ask that all born a business via the back and the senate resumed h.r. 2048. >> without objection. >> morning business is closed. under the previous order they will resume consideration of h.r. 2040 which the clerk will report. >> h.r. 2048 an act to reform the authority of the federal government to require production of certain businesses and so forth and further purposes. >> mr. president, i want to rise will make good friend from florida is here to say i wish i had a magic wand or i could
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collapse this time. one member for the full 30 hours in a process like that and my hope is they will be some accommodation as we go through this because most members would like to resolve this. then they say specifically to his two points. there is a substitute amendment that has the u.s.a. freedom language with two additional pieces. those two pieces are a six-month notification to nsa by any telecom company who intends to retain their retention program. as my good friend from florida knows part trying to move the bill is making sure we move a bill that can be passed and accepted by the house of representatives and mandatory
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and they will accept this requirement under any change in the retention program as well as the dni certification by whatever the transition period is. there'll be a first-degree and second-degree amendment. the first-degree amendment will be to extend the transition. to 12 months. so we would go from six months not to two years like the gentleman from florida and i preferred. that is i think a happy spot for us to agree. there agree. there will be a second-degree amendment to address some languages in the bill that makes it mandatory that part of the justice department that baghdad a panel of amicus individuals in the wake heard from the justice department and got a
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recommendation is that be a voluntary thing on the part of the court and we will second-degree the first-degree amendment with the language provided to us by the courts. i'd like to tell the gentleman that i hope that tomorrow afternoon we can have this completed and that we can senate to pass them by the time we go to bed tomorrow night this might all be back into place. i remind my colleagues that in a law-enforcement case is not affect did by the lone wolf provisions. they are grandfathered into the investigations can continue. for the 48 hours that night because companies they will delay the start of an investigation if in fact they need those two tools. from the standpoint of the data program it means it is frozen it can be queried for the period
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of time, but it hasn't gone away and as we reinstitute it or it is in the program additional data will be brought in an process and that they would go through to create the data would in fact be available to the national security agency only once the fisa court provides the authority for them to do it. i think there a lot of misstatements made on the floor. let me just say for my colleagues what is metadata? it is a telephone number. it is a date. that is the time the call is made in the duration of the phone call. i am not sure how we've invaded anybody's privacy by giving the telephone number de-identified. we don't know who it belongs to and we would never know until it is turned over to law
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enforcement to investigate because it's now connected to a known foreign terrorist telephone number. stop in think about this. the cfpb government agency collects financial transaction of every american but there's nobody tried to eliminate. i would love to eliminate it tomorrow. but there is no outrage over it. they collected. every american has a discount for the grocery store. you go when you get a discount. your grocery store collects 20 times the amount of data that the nsa does all identified with you in the big difference between the nsa and the grocery store. we don't sell other day that the nsa. your grocery store does. and for outrage. let's make it equal. let's understand we are in a
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society where data is transferred automatically and the fact is that program is authorized by law overseen by the congress house and senate and the executive branch of the white house. it is a program that has never had never had a privacy violation. not one of time is most people say this is not a function we believe the government should do. we are transferring data over to the telecom companies were no longer there will be a limited number of people who can access the information. we will open it up to the telecom companies to search in some way shape or form whether they are trained. it will delay the amount of time it takes us to connect the dot to another dog.
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>> mr. president, with the senator yield? >> i'd be happy to yield. >> mr. president, this is a good example is the chairman of the intel committee, a republican and the senator from florida, a democrat a former member of the intel committee agreeing and are so frustrated as just exemplified by the senate that there is just so much misunderstanding of what the legislation does. the fact that the chairman has genocide metadata a fancy term is nothing more than business records of the telephone company. a telephone number is made to another telephone number on such and such a date as such and such a time for such and such a duration. that is all.
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we don't know who the call was from or two. it is when there is suspicion through other things that are authorized by court order that the analyst can get in and open up as to what the content is in order to protect us and what the senator from north carolina agreed that there is so much being and the price as has been reported about how this is the invasion as if the conversations were the ones that were being held by the national security agency. with the senator agree with that statement? >> i agree with exactly that statement. the collection has nothing to do with the content of the call. to do that would take an
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investigation into an individual and additional core process that would probably be pursued by the fbi, not the nsa to look at the content. i think when the american people see this thing dissected in reality and they say you know, my telephone number without my name isn't really an intrusion to the time the call was made really isn't an intrusion. the duration of the call isn't a duration. and now i know they are not collecting anything that was said. there is no content in it. this meta-database is only telephone numbers. there's a legitimate question the american people ask. why did we create this program? he was transferred to the intelligence community. the purpose was in real time to be a vote to search or query a
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massive amount of data. a few weeks ago the united states went into syria and we got a bad guy without hard drives and telephones than a lot of sim cards and those telephone numbers now hopefully were tested in the mother database to see, did those funds talked to anybody in the united states? why? if terrorists are talking to somebody in this country i think they really do want us to know that. what with you since 9/11 to structure something within the law or presidential directive that gives us a head start at identifying who the individual lives. though we only do it through telephone numbers, the date of the call the length of the call. we don't do it through this
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again and content. that is why it is healthy for us to have that debate. my good friend from florida shares my frustration. we are changing a program that didn't have a problem and didn't need to be changed. and we are accepting a lower threshold of our ability to intercept that individual in the united states that might have the intention of carrying out some type of an attack. i would only say this. i don't believe the threat level has dropped to a point where we can remove some of the tools. if anything, the threat level has gotten higher and you think we would be talking about an expansion of tools. i accept the fact the debate has gotten to a point where a bulk data storage capacity within the government is not going to be continued long-term. i would say to my good friend
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who agrees with me that though i believe 24 months is a safer transition. hopefully our friends in the house will see 12 as a good agreement between the two bodies in the 12 month agreement would give me confidence knowing that taking care of the technology needed for the telecom to search in real time their numbers. make no mistake mr. president. this'll be a delay from where we currently are. i can't get into the classified nature of how long it takes us to query a database given the way we do it. but there is no question this no question this will lengthen the amount of time it takes us to connect the dots. therefore something that might be in an operational mode we may or may not have thought. that is a concern, but certainly some thing we can look at as time goes on.
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>> mr. president, if the senator will further yield. >> absolutely. >> has the senator heard many times on the press nobody has come forward and showed us one case in which the holding of these telephone business both records has paid off. has the senator heard that statement by the press? >> the senator has heard the statement by the press and by members of the body. >> has the senator comes to the conclusion that the holding of the data that there are so many cases that are classified that has protected this country from terrorists by virtue of just the example he gave of the terrorist records that were apprehended in
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the raid in syria a couple of weeks ago that those telephone numbers may well be like mining gold in finding other terrorists that are hitting us that want to hit us. .. be on the floor battling to keep this program if in fact in our oversight capacity we had looked at a program that was absolutely worthless? would we expend any capital to do it? the answer is, no, we wouldn't. we're down here battling on the floor, for those of us who are either on the committee or have been on the committee since 9/11 because we've seen the impact of this program. we know what it's enabled us to do and we know what happens when we get a trove of technology in our hands that we know gives us the ability to see whether it was tied to somebody, whether we knew about them or we didn't.
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and the fact is that when you've got groups like isil today that are saying on social media don't come to s groups like isil today that are saying that social media don't come to syria, stay in the united states, stay in europe go buy a gun. here's 100 law enforcement officers, here's 100 military folks. that's how you can carry out the jihad. it makes the use and the tools that we're talking about even more important. because no longer do we get to look at no-fly list. no longer do we get to look at individuals of traveled or 10 to travel to syria. it's individuals who grew up in neighborhoods that we never worried about where the only way we can find it out is if we connect the conversation that they've had arches of the fact that the conversation took place and then law enforcement can begin to peel the onion back with the proper authorities
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proper court order to begin to look is this a person we need to worry about. the senator from florida is 100% correct. this is invaluable to the overall defense of this country. >> tragedy of the senator would further you and i would just conclude -- mr. president. the american people need to understand that there is so much agreement behind the closed doors of the intelligence committee as they are invested with the oversight of what is going on in order to protect our blessed country. and mike lee now is that we would get to the point -- my plea now -- as the chairman suggested that maybe even by waiting tomorrow that we can collapse this time and get on to
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passing this sending down some minor modifications to the house, that they can accept it and get it to the president so this important program that tried to protect us from terrorists can continue. i thank the senator for yielding. >> and i thank my good friend from florida for his willingness to come to the floor and talk factor i see my good friend from arizona here, mr. president, before i yield, let me just restate what the senator from florida estimate. and that was gee we need a longer transition period and when it's something addressed on the data that tell. and i say to my colleagues that there will be three votes at some point, one will be on a substitute amendment. it has the exact same way one which as the u.s.a. freedom bill. it makes two changes to the u.s.a. freedom bill.
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it would have a requirement of the telecoms notify the government six months in advance of any change in the retention program for their data, which i think is very reasonable. the second would be that it requires the director of national intelligence to certified on whatever the transition date is that the software needed to be provided to the telecoms have been provided so that search can go through. in addition to that there will be two other amendments. the first one both deal with expanding the transition grid from the current six months that is in the u.s.a. freedom bill to 12 months. i didn't i said i would've preferred 24 months. we've settled on 12 months. the last thing you would change the current amicus language that's in the bill to reflect something provided to us by the courts.
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it was the courts recommendation that we change it. this would be easier to fit within a program that has a time sensitivity to it. so as we go through a debate today come as we go to tomorrow, hopefully we will have three commitment to passing week report this bill up shortly after lunch tomorrow if everything goes well. without i will yield the floor. >> mr. president? >> the senator from maine. >> mr. president i rise to address the bill before us, the u.s.a. freedom act and its predecessor the patriot act. and for talking about the specifics of those bills i want to put into some historical context what it is we're wrestling with why is it so hard. what we really trying to do here in this body this week is balance to critical constitutional provisions. the first is in the preamble to provide for the common defense and ensure domestic tranquility.
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that is a fundamental purpose of this government. that's the fundamental purpose of any government. to provide for the common defense and ensure domestic tranquility. that's national security. and it was in the very core preamble to the constitution of the united states. and, of course, the other provisions are found in the bill of rights particularly the fourth amendment which talks about the right of the people to be secure in their persons and papers from unreasonable searches and seizures. unreasonable is a keyword. the people that drafted our constitution were geniuses and every word counts. the word was unreasonable, so there is no absolute right to privacy, just there is no absolute right to national security. we have to try to find the right balance, that's what we have to do year in and year out decade
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in and decade out in relation to developments in technology and developments in terms of the threats which we face. it's a calibration that we have to continue to try to make. now, i've been concerned as a member of the intelligence committee about the retention of large quantities of telephone data by the government. i think the program under which that data has been analyzed is important to come and i will talk about that in a few minutes. but aisha the i should the concern of many in this body that simple having all of that information in the government come into government computers even though it is hedged about with affairs protections even though there were requirements for how it was to be accessed and the level of attention to the detail of that access was important and there's no evidence that it has ever been abused. i still felt come as i say along with many others that
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simply having the government retain that information itself was a danger to the liberty of our country. i am with many of the members of this body that have expressed that concern. therefore, the freedom act, which we have before us now the u.s.a. freedom act proposes to move delete the data with the phone companies instead of the government collecting it and having it into government hands. the data will be in the phone companies, and if it is necessary to access for national security purposes the government will have to go to the process of going through the justice department and the court in order to get permission to access that data. why shouldn't the government simply hold it? i am a subscriber to the famous maxim that power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. while the current administration
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or the prior administration may have no inclination to misuse of that data, we have no idea what may come in the future, what pressures there may be what political pressures there may be and therefore, struck me as sensible to get it out of the government's hands. now a problem that i've had with the u.s.a. freedom act is i felt it went too far in the other direction because there was no requirement in the bill as a past a house that the phone companies retain and hold the date for any particular period of time. they now hold as a matter of business practices, 18 months to two years, which is all that is necessary in order to have the data available for national security search if necessary. the problem is there's a requirement that they maintain that level of attention. and, in fact in talking in an open hearing with one of the vice presidents of one of the
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carriers he said categorically we will not accept a limitation on how long we have to hold the data. i think that is a glaring weakness in the usa freedom act and effective led me to vote against consideration of the bill when it came the motion to proceed when it came up last week. today or tomorrow whenever the timing works out there will be a series of amendments proposed by the senator from north carolina, picture of the intelligence committee designed to deal with several of these what i consider technical but very important aspects of this program. and one would require that if the carriers decide to hold the data for a short period of time they would have to notify the government, notify the congress and we could then make a decision whether we thought that some additional required period of attention with the necessary in order to adequately protect
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national security. another a minute that i understand it's going to be proposed is that the transition period from the current program to the private care is holding the data aspect will be extended from six months to a year come simply because this is a major one with a herculean, technical task to develop the software to be sure that this information will be available for national security purposes on a timely basis. now, the final question, one we've been debating and discussing here is is it an important program? is it worth maintaining? there's been a lot of argument that he can't point to a specific plot that was specifically foiled by this narrow provision, then we don't need it at all. i don't buy that, mr. president. it is part of our national
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security toolkit. and it's interesting to talk about what is the history of this provision. it came into being shortly after september 11 because i got in our security analysis ability was identified at that time and that was we could not track phone connections not content i'll talk about that in amendment, but we could not track phone connections between the people who were preparing for the september 11 attack. and for that reason the section 218 program was invented. and i want to stop for just a moment and make clear to the american people. this program does not collect or listen to or otherwise have anything to do with the content of phone calls. as i talk to people in maine and they approach me about this, they say we don't want the government listening to all of our phone calls. and the answer is, they don't.
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in this program does not convey and has not conveyed any such authority. we are talking about much more narrow ability to determine whether a particular phone number called another phone number the duration and the date. that's it. and an example of its usefulness was at the boston marathon bombing. the two brothers perpetrated that horrendous attack in boston in april of 2013. this program allowed the authorities to check their phone numbers to see if they were in touch with other people in the country to determine whether this was a nationwide plot or whether it was simply these two guys in boston your that i would submit is an important, so it's a critical, piece of information. now, it turns out they were acting on their own but had
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there been connections with other similarly inclined people in the country at that time, that would've been an important thing for us to know. and that's the way this program is used. is absolutely critical and indispensable in solving these cases? i don't think anybody can argue that that's the case. is it important and useful as a part of a national security toolkit? yes. particularly when the invasion of privacy if you will, is a limited and really so narrowly defined. i liken it to a notebook of a police officer carries at the scene of a crime. a detective goes to the scene of the crime takes out his notebook and write some notes. if we said detectives no longer carry notebooks what it eliminate law enforcement ability to solve crimes? no. but would limit a tool that was helpful to them in solving that
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crime or another crime? the answer i think would be yes. we should not take a tool a way that is useful and important unless there is some compelling argument on the other side. and since we're not talking about the content of phone conversations, we are similar talking about which never called which other number. that it can only the accessed through a process that involves the justice department and then permission from the court, i think is a program that is worthy of protection and usefulness to this country. i think it's a particularly important now, and it's ironic that we are talking about in effect unilaterally disarming to this extent at a time when the threat to this country has never been greater. and the nature of the threat is changing. september 11 is what i would call terrorism 1.0.
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a plot that was hatched abroad the people who perpetrated it were smuggled into the country in various ways. they had a specific target any specific plot that they were working on. that's terrorism 1.0. that's september 11. terrorism 2.0 is a plot that is hatched abroad what is communicated directly to people in the united states who are part of the jihadists group. but now we are on to terrorism 3.0. which is ice is thin at what amounts to a terrorist apb to no particular person but to anyone in this country who has been radicalized by themselves, by the internet. is no direct connection between isis. it might be a facebook post and that person then takes up arms and tries to kill americans. and that is what their intent is.
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that's the hardest for us to counteract. and that's the situation where visibility to track numbers calling numbers can be extremely useful to fact it might be the only useful tool because we're not going to have that kind of specific plotting that we've seen in the past. this is the most dangerous threat that i think we face today. and to throw a side a protection, a safeguard that i believe passes constitutional and legal muster, that goes the extra mile to protect the privacy rights of americans by getting this data out of the hands of the government is one that is worthy of the support and the active work in this chamber who i can find that balance the balance between the
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imperative, the most solemn responsibility we have in this body to provide for the common defense and ensure domestic tranquility to protect the safety and security of the people of this country. in light of the constitutional limitations in the bill of rights to protect our individual liberties that make us who we are. we can do both things. there is never going to be a final answer to this question, but what we have to do is just what we are doing this week is to assess the threats, assess the technology developments, and try to find the right calibration, the right balance that will allow us to meet that most solemn of our responsibilities. mr. president i look forward to hopefully the consideration of amendments later either today or tomorrow and look forward to what i hope will be a quick passage of this legislation in the next 24-48 hours so that we
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can look our constituents and the people of this country in the eye and say we took the responsibility to protect your security seriously. we also took seriously your rights, your liberty and your understanding that the government is not going to infringe unreasonably in any way in violation of the principles of this constitution. mr. president, i yield the floor. >> mr. president? >> the senator from north carolina. >> mr. president, i want to thank my good friend the senator from maine and committed member of the intelligence committee, one who has been vitally involved in the oversight of section 215. i think that's what's left out of the debate is 15 members of the united states senate have
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actively carried out oversight. this is probably one of the most looked at programs that exists within the jurisdiction of the intelligence committee. the are a couple more the public a more constant attention but this is not a program that is used of the frequent. i think that's the key thing. i just want to reiterate some of the things that senator king said. we are not listening to people's phone calls. there is no content collected. this program expired last night at midnight and it means that the database cannot be queried regardless of whether we find a terrorist telephone number. and i think what's important remind my colleagues and the american people is this is all triggered by a known terrorist number outside of the united states. now come in a case of the tsarnaev brothers we had a telephone number outside the country would want to see
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whether the connection had been made so that there was direction in that case. but this isn't triggered not by just going through the database and looking at who americans are calling and trying to figure something out. it's triggered by a four known terrorist telephone number, and we searched to see that my contact in the united states. the fisa court only allows us to be, to do a query when there's a reasonable suspicion. based upon specific facts, the base for query is associated with a foreign terrorist or terrorist organization. if the nsa can't make that case to the courts that is never authorized to go forward. the nsa is not searching the records to see who americans are calling. they are only looking for the terrorist links from the connection of a phone number known to be a terrorist phone number. now, my good friend from maine talked about the boston bombings. the mr. kobak to some comments
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the director of the fbi said earlier this year, our earlier last year. director mueller he testified in the house that had the program been in place before september 11 2001, those attacks might have been derailed. why? well, according to the director of the fbi come before 9/11 the intelligence community, we lost track about alameda are. he was one of the two lived in san diego and he was tied to a terrorist group in yemen. and we lost contact about it are going to tears or decision in yemen. so if we had this program in place we could've targeted the telephone numbers out of the cell in yemen to see if they were contacting anybody in the united states at which there were contacting mihdhar and we could've put the connection together and found mihdhar after lofton in flight coming from
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kuala lumpur to the united states. i think director mueller said we saw on nine 9/11 what happens when the right information is not put together had this program been in place and could've provided a necessary link between a safe house in yemen and drank 11 in san diego. but those that have claimed that this program serves no purpose prior to 9/11 here's the direct of the fbi saying it would appear to have the boston marathon that told us there was no terrorist link. and become to the 2009 new york city subway bombing plot. in early september 2001 activities of al-qaeda terror script in pakistan, nsa noted content from contact from an individual in the united states whom the fsf like of it as a colorado based zazi come under section 215 provided the important lead information that help for this plot.
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mr. president i want to say this one time he came to my college. this program works. it has worked. at a stop attacks against we've been able to identify an individual before they carried out the attack. now, if the threshold of my colleagues is a this has not served any useful purpose can mean you can't have an attack to be able to prove that you've thwarted an attack, then you know, that's not what we've got this program employs people are trying to get ahead of the terrorist acts the end the terrorist acts the end of the case of a subway bombings in new york we do that in 2009. does the chicago terrorist investigation into thousand nine your david coleman headley, a chicago businessman and dual u.s. and pakistan citizen was arrested by the fbi as he tried to deport chicago o'hare airport a good year. at the time of his arrest he and his coach were plotting to address -- -- the prophet
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muhammad of the best of al-qaeda. section 215 metadata and analysis was done to was used along with the fbi authorities to investigate his overseas associates and their involvement and his activities. i'm not sure how it gets any clear than this. we have an individual whose radicalized intends to carry out an act of to his overseas connections that we never would have understood without section 215. and i think as my good friend from maine knows that when you connect and typically leads to leads to another dot. in to say to law enforcement of to say to another committee we are not want individuals to connect these dots, it is basically stand up in front of the american people and say we are supposed to keep you safe but we are not going to do that. so i say to my good friend from maine, thank you for your support. i say to my colleagues, i hope we are going to be able to
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reinstitute this program shortly after lunch tomorrow. hopefully we will be able to do it with three amendment of votes and to final passage. one will be a substitute to the full bill. it has all the u.s.a. freedom language with two changes. it would require that telecom companies to provide six-month notification if any change in the retention program of their company. that language was the senator from a maine suggestion and it works extreme it well. the second piece of a substitute amendment will deal with the director of national intelligence certification that we have made the technological changes necessary for the telecom companies to actually query that data that they're holding. there will be two additional amendments. the first one will be to change the transition period from six months to 12 months, and i think the senator from maine would
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agree with me that i'd like to see it longer but anything longer than six months is beneficial as we talk about the safety and security of the american people. and the last one is a change in the amicus language, or the friend of the court language. i will get into that in a little bit, but they occur to bill says that the courts shall, shall means they will do it. and what the court the administered by the court has provided to us is language that they think will on other court the flexibility when they need a friend of the court to solicit a friend of the court in fisa court but not required them with the word shall always have a friend of the court. again, i think as my good friend from maine knows the process we go through in section 215 through the fisa court in many cases is an accelerated process. any delay can really defeat the purpose of what we're doing, and that's trying to be in front of an attack versus in the back of
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an effective and i said one last time for my colleagues, nsa under the metadata program collects a couple of things. they collected the telephone number or they collect a date. they collect the duration of time that the call took place. they don't get content. they don't get the person spent the they have no idea whose number it is and what they did a domestic number to a foreign terrorist number that then goes to beckley to the fbi because they say to the bureau, we have a suspicious american because they have communicated with a terrorist at which time it is out of the 215 program for the purposes of investigation of the individual. if there was ever a need to find out whose telephone number it was or if there was a need to seek content, that would be
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sought by the fbi under an investigation through the normal court processes that are not part of the 215 program. 215 limited to a telephone number with no identifier for whose number it is. a collection of the date and the duration of the call. and i think the gentleman from maine would agree with me. i would just as soon see the programs they nsa but that will transition out and we would just like to make sure that we have enough time so that it can seamlessly happen versus an artificial date of six months and not knowing whether they can happen. i thank the gentleman from maine. mr. president, i yield the floor. >> and that from the debate from yesterday. ascended about the devil in resuming debate on the usa freedom act, a measure that deals with nsa surveillance programs that it will continue programs established under the patriot act but with some modifications to some
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proficiency with surveillance expire tonight including the provision of the dealt with the bulk collection of bulk data. the president pro tempore: the senate will come to order. the chaplain, dr. barry black, will lead the senate in prayer. the chaplain: let us pray. god of our forebears, author of liberty, search our hearts and minds in order that we might better know ourselves. lord help us to comprehend what we need to better represent you.
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empower us to live exemplary lives that are worthy of your great love. give our lawmakers a renewed loyalty to protecting the freedoms that americans hold deer. may our senators use their stewardship of position and influence to ensure that america is a shining city upon a hill. may their highest incentive be not to win over one another but to win with one another by doing your will for all. we pray in your great name. amen.
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the president pro tempore: please join me in reciting the pledge of allegiance to our flag. i pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under god indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. mr. mcconnell: madam president? the presiding officer: the majority leader. mr. mcconnell: i wish we'd been able to move the cloture
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and amendment votes we'll consider today to yesterday. i made an offer to do so because it's hard to see the point in allowing yet another day to lapse when everyone has already had a chance to say their piece. when the end game appeared toive all and when the need to move forward with a thoughtful and expeditious manner seemed perfectly clear. but this is the senate, and members are entitled to different views and members have tools to assert those views. i.t. the nature ofit's the nature of the body where we work. moreover it's important to remember that it's not just the denial of consent that's brought us to where we are. the short of short-term extension that would have provided the senate with the time and space it needed to advance bipartisan compromise legislation through regular order was also blocked in a floor vote. but what's happened has
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happened and we are where we are. now is the time to put all that in the past and work together to diligently make some discreet and sensible improvements to the house bill. before scrapping an effective system that has helped protect us from attack in favor of an untried one, we should at least work toward securing some modest degree of assurance that the new system can in fact actually work. the obama administration also already told us it would not be able to make any firm guarantees in that regard that it would work. at least that's the way the bill currently reads. and the way the bill currently reads, there's also no requirement -- no requirement -- for the retention and availability of significant data for analysis. these are not small problems. the legislation we're considering proposes major changes to some of our nation's most fundamental and necessary
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krpts terrorism tools. that's why the revelations from the administration shocked many senators including a lot of supporters of this legislation. it's simply astounding that the very government officials charged with implementing the bill would tell us, both in person and in writing that if it turns out this new system doesn't work, well, then they will just come back to us and let us know. they'll just come back and let us know. this is worrying for many reasons, not the least of which is that we don't want to find out the system doesn't work in a far more tragic way. that's why we need to do what we can today to ensure this legislation is as strong as it can be under the circumstances. here are the kind of amendments i hope every senator will join me in supporting today. one that would allow for more time for the construction and testing of a system that does
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not yet exist. one amendment would allow for more time for the construction and testing of a system that doesn't yet exist. another amendment would ensure the director of national intelligence is charged with at least -- at least -- reviewing and certifying the readiness of the system. another that would require simple notification if telephone providers, the entities charged withholding data under this bill, elect to change their data retention policies. let me remind you that one provider harass already said expressly and in writing that it would not commit to holding the data for any period of time under the house-passed bill unless compelled by law. so this amendment represents the least we can do to ensure we'll be able to know, especially in an emergency whether the dots we need to connect have been actually wiped away.
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we'll also consider an amendment that would address concerns we've heard from the nonpartisan administrative office of the u.s. courts. in other words the lifetime federal judges who actually serve on the fisa court. in a recent letter, they wrote that the proposed amicus provision could "impede the fisa court's role in protecting the civil liberties of americans." end quote. i'd ask that a full text of that letter be inserted into the record. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: -- at the conclusion of my remarks. so, madam president the bottom line is this: the basic fixes i've just mentioned are common sense. anyone who wants to see the system envisioned under this bill actually work will want to support them. and anyone who has heard the administration's "well we'll get back to you if there's a problem" promise should protect these modest safeguards as well. we may have been delayed getting to the point at which we've arrived rktarrived, but now that we're
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here let's work seriously and ex-spie dish us will/around cooperatively to get the best legislation possible and prevent anymore delay and uncertainty. madam president i ask unanimous consent that the senate stand in recess from 12:30 until 2:15 to allow for the weekly conference meetings. the presiding officer: without objection, so ordered. mr. mcconnell: i suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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